- The Mullen GT is an electrical sports activities automobile from a startup with roots in China.
- It claims a 60 mph time of 4.2 seconds and a high pace of 125 mph.
- The worth is $150,000 and deliveries are stated to begin in 2025 or 2026.
Deep in Citi Subject Lot E is an unidentifiable coupe beneath a inexperienced tent. Its low-slung physique, cloaked in flat grey with a big black swoosh, is extra concealing with each closing step. There’s a dragonfly emblem on the nostril. A facet swoosh is completed in uncovered carbon and channels air to a pair of warmth exchangers. The tail says Mullen. It is the Mullen GT, an electrical sports activities automobile from a startup that plans to begin delivering automobiles within the U.S. in 2025 or 2026.
Like many automotive startups, Mullen’s backstory is sophisticated. It begins with the 2015 Shanghai debut of the Qiantu K50, an electrical sports activities automobile that mum or dad firm Nice Wall Huaguan would promote in China from 2018 till 2020. Later, on the 2019 New York Auto Present, a California firm referred to as Mullen Automotive pledged to import kits and promote completed, fully-certified examples in 2020. We’ve tracked many EV manufacturers which have but to promote a single automobile within the U.S., comparable to Bollinger, of which Mullen now owns a 60 p.c stake. Mullen’s Nasdaq IPO was in November 2021 and it had a second reveal weeks later on the Los Angeles Auto Present, an SUV coupe referred to as the Mullen 5.
Now, at this parking zone in Queens, we’re devoting a day to Mullen’s elusive two-seater, the rebadged EV that Qiantu stop constructing three years in the past. Whereas Mullen was additionally prepping to construct rebadged Chinese language cargo vans and trucksin Mississippi, the K50 was utilizing at the very least 4 names. Till final March, it was the Dragonfly K50, Mullen K50, Qiantu K50 by Mullen, or Mullen Dragonfly.
Subsequent to us is Mitchell Dyche, an engineer whose six-foot-five body comfortably suits within the cozy cabin. He says he specified the 19-inch center-lock wheels, Brembo brakes, and the Pirelli P Zero tires. The remainder is Qiantu’s authentic imaginative and prescient, proper all the way down to the producer etchings on the glass.
Up shut, it appears to be like good. In and out, the Mullen GT has the proportions and dimensions of a mid-engine automobile. It has about the identical footprint as an Acura NSX. The physique gaps might be tighter, however the GT just isn’t the scrappy prototype we anticipated. There’s a big portrait touchscreen canted towards the motive force that’s nonetheless beneath growth, a digital instrument panel, and a big curved shifter. In contrast to numerous Chinese language automobiles, the GT doesn’t overtly copy the design of any established manufacturers. And whereas it’s a demonstrator, there’s noticeable polish.
The twin-motor setup is silent and devoid of whine, the regen is clean, physique motions are managed, and the steering is pleasantly weighted. The specs are cheap for a efficiency EV: About 400 horsepower packed into an aluminum body with carbon physique panels, all-wheel drive with torque vectoring, a 78.0-kWh T-shaped lithium-ion battery with the majority of its cells behind the motive force, and a claimed 230 miles of vary. In Sport mode, the GT will get a little bit perkier, although in our three brief laps we didn’t really feel both motor shifting torque. Grip and stopping energy are expectedly excessive.
However Mullen has downgraded the GT’s efficiency since March, when it promised an “EV supercar” that might speed up to 60 mph in 1.95 seconds and exceed 200 mph. That’s when Mullen reacquired the rights to promote the K50 and settled a contract dispute, in line with courtroom paperwork, after it had allegedly defaulted on almost $23 million owed to Qiantu simply months after the New York reveal. Mullen has since walked again these supercar stats to 4.2 seconds and 125 mph. The worth: $150,000.
Mullen has stated it might construct the GT (and a GTRS) on the previous AM Basic plant in Indiana, the place it additionally plans to construct the 5 crossover and Bollinger B1 and B2 (Bollinger had refunded buyer deposits in 2022). Reservations are $1000 for supply someday in late 2025 or early 2026.
From an investor’s perspective, Nasdaq needs to delist Mullen inventory for buying and selling under the $1 restrict (it’s under 50 cents as of Friday) and Mullen is concurrently suing among the largest funding companies, together with Charles Schwab, alleging manipulation of its inventory. There’s much more about Mullen we gained’t get into in nice element, together with how the corporate was based in 2014 after shopping for up the stays of Coda Automotive after which making an attempt to resell that firm’s Chinese language rebadged EV because the Mullen 700e.
Objectively, given the place it stands in 2023, the Mullen GT looks like a risk however not a certainty. As extra new automakers come to appreciate, constructing and promoting automobiles to Individuals is a really onerous factor.
Clifford Atiyeh is a reporter and photographer for Automotive and Driver, specializing in enterprise, authorities, and litigation information. He’s president of the New England Motor Press Affiliation and dedicated to saving each manuals and previous Volvos.